Let’s all just call this for what it is, needed. Epic Games strongest trait has never really been telling a phenomenal story. Yet, that’s okay because their games more than make up for this in gameplay. After all, isn’t that what is most important? Games need to be fun to play.
I don’t think I’ve ever heard someone say, “You know, that game [insert crappy game name], well I just played for 10 hours straight and beat it. It was so painful, it was so bad, but I just couldn’t put it down.”
Well, either way Epic Games felt that they needed a little bit of help in order to improve the way they tell stories within their games. What better company to swoop in with storyboards and writing than Pixar?
A recent interview with Gameinformer, reveals the storytelling techniques that have already been implemented in their upcoming Gears of War: Judgement, and how Pixar has changed their views.
Judgement provides the story through the use of many different techniques such as embedded storytelling which helps to provide background information about what happened at key locations by utilizing the environment. Characters also narrate their own stories throughout the course of the campaign by providing their testimony as to what happened while they were on the battlefield, and players will even be able to alter the course of action with Declassification Options. These allow players to change the events of the game by changing their testimony and creating a harder challenge as they play through.
Even with these ideas already present, Pixar provided the Epic team with a few more storytelling tips. The first piece of advice they offered is identifying the fears, or loves, of a character and using this as a means to define who they are. In addition, characters should have a clear motivation that drives their actions. This example was shown best with Woody from Toy Story. His clear motivation through each of the three films was the fear of abandonment, and this is a fear that could clearly resonate with audiences.
At the end of the interview, Fergusson had one thing to say about the ideas they took away from their Pixar workshop:
“It’s been great as we sort of look at other projects about how we can use those sorts of processes to think about characters and think about arcs, and motivation.”
What do you think? Will the new knowledge bestowed upon Epic help them improve their storytelling, or do you just want more stuff to blow up? Let us know in the comments below and be sure to check out the full interview over at Gameinformer. It’s definitely worth the watch.